Results 1 to 17 of 17
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: RossJamis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    382

    Elbow vs knee pads

    This maybe a silly question but what do you guys consider most important knee or elbow pads.. Not trying to start a debate just get the general consensus. The reason I ask is I see a lot of guys wearing knee pads but not elbow. I've been riding for almost 30 years and I've never really hurt my knees. Now elbows that's a different story. Ive been riding more rocky terrain and think well maybe I need to reconsider this.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    6

    Elbow vs knee pads

    Knee pads.

    Every time I fall (which is quite a bit) it's always at a good speed where the bike slips from underneath me, and I don't have time to control where my knees land. I usually wear both, but in Texas summers I only wear knee.

    I'm on flats so it might be different for clippers.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Saul Lumikko's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    1,082
    I've only ever hit my elbows on pretty much anything while cycling, so based on probability of injury they are more important.
    But if I were to bust my knee, my ability to ride a bike or walk could be seriously compromised, so based on the worst case scenario knee pads are more important.

    Basic things in occupational risk management as well: likelihood and consequences of an accident. Low-low is the only acceptable condition, everything else must be addressed.

    I wear both.

  4. #4
    RTM
    RTM is offline
    #1 Latex Salesman
    Reputation: RTM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    1,556

    Elbow vs knee pads

    Knees are in the line of fire from handlebars, top tubes, the ground, roots and rocks in every crash. It is very common to take a direct and painful hit on the kneecap. Generally, in most XC/trail crashes you have enough time to crash "correctly", which allows you to tuck the elbow from taking a direct hit. There's no such thing as always or never, but generally elbow guards for XC/trail rides are overkill.

    I also ride DH and the crashes happen very fast without warning. I ride with full armor, but do see younger guys in t-shirts w/bare arms. Seems nuts to me but I'm an old geezer so what do I know about being cool.

    - Rob
    "The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of a low price is forgotten." - Benjamin Franklin

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: RossJamis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    382
    Saul you must be a better rider then me because I cant imagine riding MTB with one arm either.
    RTM I am also a bit of an old geezer. And when I started riding I never saw anyone wearing any kind of limb protection except in down hill races. In the 80's you would have been labeled a newb if you showed up with kneepads on. But now I see it frequently and being the old geezer that I am, I know that my recovery time will be much longer then it was even just 10 years ago.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    26
    Concur on the fact to the knees being much more prone to being banged up upon a fall. Also the sustained injury if severe would hamper ability to walk. I myself have taking falls which if not for knee pads could have sustained a large gash to the knee or other exposed areas. On a fall for the most part, reaction is to correct body posture in not harming the arms, so gloves are a major factor! Personally I sense based on the trail ride both elbow & knee pads are a necessity even to the most proficient rider, again just an opinion based on the elements of the trail. Know some may agree, while others will disagree. However that is the purpose of the forum? One thing for sure is, not an advocate to riding in just a bare t-shirt with the bare arms exposed!!!!! Keep riding, enjoy the sport and be safe.

  7. #7
    troll
    Reputation: brokebike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    120
    I'm glad you started this thread, because I've been pondering the same thing. Two weeks ago, I had a bad crash that sent me over the bars, and sliding down a gravelly trail on my right elbow. Needless to say, my arm was f**ked. I'm still off the bike, and still nursing this ugly, open wound, trying to keep it clean and bandaged up until the skin starts to grow back. You better believe I went right out and got a set of elbow pads!

    Years of growing up skateboarding, and playing bike polo since 2007, I've learned to take a fall pretty well, tucking and rolling as best I can. Trouble is, I usually always fall on the same side, and my shoulder / arm tends to take the brunt of the damage. I'm a self employed artist/designer, so I really need to protect my hands and arms the most, and now that I'm getting older, it takes me a bit longer to recover. I have a couple of sets of nice DH kneepads that I used to use in bike polo, but I felt really restricted and they were hot as hell... but I may start employing them for trail riding, because quite frankly, what's worse then the pain is not being able to do the things I want (or need) to do because of an injury.

  8. #8
    troll
    Reputation: brokebike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    120
    One other thing I've noticed, is my elbows and forearms take a lot of hits and scrapes from branches and thorns, and the occasional glance of the side of a tree... I think the elbow pads will come in especially handy for lessening those sort of annoying injuries.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    26
    Agree, I have become more of an active mtb rider, although still consider myself learning from others based on interaction and riding skills. However on the forum looking at some of the pics on wounds and crashes, some rather gruesome its' unfortunate some riders had to endure the accidents. No offense to anyone, riding is fun just think some risk factors are not worth the falls along with medical attention. Although again those whom are more experience riders will disagree.

  10. #10
    RTM
    RTM is offline
    #1 Latex Salesman
    Reputation: RTM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    1,556

    Elbow vs knee pads

    Quote Originally Posted by Koni13 View Post
    Agree, I have become more of an active mtb rider, although still consider myself learning from others based on interaction and riding skills. However on the forum looking at some of the pics on wounds and crashes, some rather gruesome its' unfortunate some riders had to endure the accidents. No offense to anyone, riding is fun just think some risk factors are not worth the falls along with medical attention. Although again those whom are more experience riders will disagree.
    You've pretty well captured the essence of it all. Bottom line, if you want to wear pads, wear them. Whatever your motivation, do what you like, it's your ride! And you'll find when you actually go riding, guys with experience will be most likely to shrug their shoulders and say, "whatever makes you happy". Because we are all there to enjoy our own rides too. The arguing is entirely on the internet.


    - Rob
    "The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of a low price is forgotten." - Benjamin Franklin

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    870
    As long as it's not tropical, like this summer has been, I sport both now. I just don't like being hurt anymore. Call me old, whatever. When it's really hot I may go with just shin pads but I end up feeling guilty and suit up anyway. Once them temps are consistently below ~45 I wear the full face too.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    535
    Knee for me all the way.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation: MSU Alum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    1,027
    Knee (shin) pads when I'm on my flats and elbow (forearm) pads when I'm clipped in.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    46
    Quote Originally Posted by brokebike View Post
    I'm glad you started this thread, because I've been pondering the same thing. Two weeks ago, I had a bad crash that sent me over the bars, and sliding down a gravelly trail on my right elbow. Needless to say, my arm was f**ked. I'm still off the bike, and still nursing this ugly, open wound, trying to keep it clean and bandaged up until the skin starts to grow back. You better believe I went right out and got a set of elbow pads!

    Years of growing up skateboarding, and playing bike polo since 2007, I've learned to take a fall pretty well, tucking and rolling as best I can. Trouble is, I usually always fall on the same side, and my shoulder / arm tends to take the brunt of the damage. I'm a self employed artist/designer, so I really need to protect my hands and arms the most, and now that I'm getting older, it takes me a bit longer to recover. I have a couple of sets of nice DH kneepads that I used to use in bike polo, but I felt really restricted and they were hot as hell... but I may start employing them for trail riding, because quite frankly, what's worse then the pain is not being able to do the things I want (or need) to do because of an injury.
    The same thing happened to me yesterday including screwing up the right elbow, the thing that sucks is I was planning on purchasing elbow pads but wasn't sure if I wanted to get POC to match my knee pads. I wish I would have made my choice faster but I surely will not ride without elbow pads again. I also found out the importance of gloves because the palm of my bomber gloves has some nice scratches on them now, my hands would have been totally screwed if I wasnt wearing them. Any good recommendations for elbow pads with good forearm protection?

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation: SeaHag's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    217
    I rarely seem to hit my knees first in a crash as I'm typically moving pretty fast and instincts being to protect my head/face, I usually get my hands/arms up to make first contact. I also ride a lot of tight singletrack and get a few glancing blows to my forearms off trees per ride...so elbow pads and gloves are my first line of defence along with the helmet.

    When I'm riding trails that I know will have a lot of technical challenge, I'll throw on the knee/shin gaurds as well. They are a bit of a nuisance but considering the long time healing a bad crash would entail, they are becoming more and more common on my rides.

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation: RossJamis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    382
    Well based on my experience I needed the elbow pads more so I bought them 1st. I am still looking for protection for shin/knees. I bought G form elbow pads. Here are my 1st impressions. First they are longer then I imagined they are more like sleeves then pads. Not exactly crazy about that. They are fairly comfortable and are definitely cooler then most pads. When air is moving over them they actually feel colder then your bare skin. Impact protection- since I haven't wiped out on them yet I did some of the typical home tests. I whacked my elbow with a hammer a rolling pin and my biking shoe. Now they definitely did make a difference but I definitely also could feel the hammer. After several whacks my elbow was hurting some but no lasting damage. The rolling pin was less and the shoe was barely noticeable. Now the hype is these absorb 94% of impact. My estimate is somewhere closer to 60%. For my cross country riding they should do well. I will just keep my riding in hammer factories to a minimum.
    When you've seen someone rupture their scrotum on a bike you won't take the standards for top tube clearance lightly!

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    43
    In order to make sure to stay safety i use both knee pads, and elbow pads, its always knee where i get hurt.

Similar Threads

  1. Elbow and Knee Pads
    By Trail_Blazer in forum Apparel and Protection
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 08-30-2012, 02:12 PM
  2. knee and elbow pads
    By pingey37 in forum Women's Lounge
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 09-04-2011, 12:17 PM
  3. I need elbow and knee & shin pads!!
    By s2ramz in forum Where are the Best Deals?
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-05-2011, 04:17 PM
  4. elbow and knee pads
    By ruquick77 in forum Apparel and Protection
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 07-30-2011, 10:53 PM
  5. Big Boy sized Knee and Elbow pads
    By mwandrusz in forum Clydesdales/Tall Riders
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 04-20-2011, 08:28 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •